Displaying animals in public

If you operate a premises where animals are displayed to the general public, you need to apply for authorisation from the County Administrative Board. Animals used as attractions or decorations in shops, restaurants or similar activities are also covered by these rules.

What does it mean to display animals publicly?

The public display of animals covers all instances where animals are presented to the general public

  • for at least seven days or more per year;
  • at a permanent establishment.

In order to display animals publicly, you first need to apply for authorisation from the County Administrative Board.

Examples of premises that may require a permit:

  • zoos
  • 4H farms
  • tropical gardens
  • enclosures with visiting tourists
  • open‑air museums with animals
  • aviaries in gardening facilities
  • urban parks with animals
  • mini zoos
  • ornamental fish displays/aquariums at restaurants (you do not need a permit if you have three or fewer aquariums and the volume of each tank is less than 1 000 litres).

If you wish to display wild animals, you need to apply for several other types of permits, in addition to a public display permit:

  • to display the animals, you need a permit under the Species Protection Ordinance;
  • to keep wild animals in an enclosure, you need a permit under the Hunting Protection Ordinance;
  • you need a permit in accordance with the Environmental Code in order to construct the enclosure.

The e-services and forms of the County Administrative Board in this field are not available in English. If you wish to submit an application or notification, you may contact the County Administrative Board, which can inform you how to proceed.

Apply for authorisation to display animals publicly

If you have, or plan to start up, an establishment where animals are to be displayed to the public, you should start by reading certain parts of the Board of Agriculture’s regulations.

Read the first common chapter and the detailed chapters dealing specifically with the animal species that are relevant to your establishment. A species register at the end will help you find the right chapters.

Swedish Board of Agriculture regulations on animal husbandry in zoos, etc (in Swedish) External link.

Animals for presentation, Swedish Board of Agriculture (in Swedish) External link.

Application fee

The basic fee is SEK 2 000. It must be paid before we start processing your application.

You will also have to pay a fee based on the scope of the case:

  • single space and single case: SEK 4 400;
  • single or multiple spaces and minor inspection: SEK 7 700;
  • several spaces and major inspection: SEK 16 100;
  • several spaces and very extensive inspection: SEK 24 600.

The County Administrative Board will visit your establishment

Once the application is complete and you have paid the application fee, the County Administrative Board will visit you to see whether your premises meets the requirements for the public display of animals. If the establishment is approved, we will take a decision to that effect. The decision will last until further notice.

Registration for visitor activity

If you have visitor activity with three or more visits per year, you must report your visitor activity to the County Administrative Board. Examples of visitor activities are riding schools, farms that receive school classes and 4H farms. This also includes therapy dogs and dogs in healthcare.